Frederic Vasseur has criticised AlphaTauri for being "too aggressive" in how they announced the signing of Laurent Mekies as Formula 1 team principal.
As revealed by RacingNews365, Mekies is to join AlphaTauri and replace the long-serving Franz Tost as boss, with former FIA chief Peter Bayer also joining the Faenza squad as CEO.
Mekies was under a long-term deal with Ferrari - with Vasseur critical of the way AlphaTauri announced the deal, especially with finer aspects of his departure still to be agreed.
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Vasseur on AlphaTauri
"First of all, I think it is a mega opportunity for Laurent [and] considering also that I have a good relationship with him, I won't block Laurent," Vasseur told media, including RacingNews365.
"Then it is also - if you speak about the timeline - I think Toro Rosso [AlphaTauri] was probably a bit aggressive on the press release.
"We have a long-term contract with Laurent and we'll have to discuss the details.
"I'm there to protect Ferrari's interests, and it is Ferrari first, and it will always be Ferrari first. It means that I will have to discuss the conditions [of Mekies' departure].
"We have a long-term contract with him and we'll have to find the best for Ferrari - and depending on when he will move to [AlphaTauri], we will decide the end of the collaboration.
"We will do it properly and the relationship is very positive."
Second key Ferrari exit
Mekies' exit is the second big name to leave the Scuderia, following the departure of David Sanchez to McLaren.
Despite the exits as Ferrari try to build themselves up into a title-contending position, Vasseur was clear that the loses were "not a drama."
"To lose two people out of 1600, it’s not a drama,” he explained.
"You know that the power of the team is always more important, and the power of the group, than the individuals.
"We have to keep this in mind, that the most important is the group.
"The group is there, we are recruiting massively, we are not communicating that but we are recruiting massively.
“And we will do that step by step because you can’t put an organisation in place in two weeks.
"You know perfectly the system of the recruitment in F1, it’s quite long and painful.
"But we are working on it, don’t expect that one day you will have a new organisation.
"It will be step by step and we are putting something in place.”
Balve Bains is joined by RacingNews365.com Editorial Director Dieter Rencken and Asia Correspondent Michael Butterworth to dissect the key talking points from the last week in F1.